Three town hall meetings are set for Delaware County residents to learn more about a proposed solid waste plan.

Ken Purdy, with Solid Waste Institute of Northeast Oklahoma addressed the county commissioners on Tuesday, Sept. 5, for more than an hour during this week's meeting.

The meetings are set for Tuesday, Sept. 19 at the Grove Community Center,

Tuesday, Sept. 26 at the Jay Public Library and Tuesday, Oct. 3 and the Kansas Vo-Tech site. All meetings begin at 6 p.m.

Ed Crone, Grand Gateway Economic Development Association and Purdy, who has 28-years’ experience in solid waste told the audience the study is to give a framework of how solid waste policies should be handled.

In March 2016 the Solid Waste Authority removed the green dumpsters and in their place establish “convenience sites,” or trash-collection sites.

The issue has ping-ponged back and forth between the authority and the county commission for over a year with no satisfactory resolution, leaving many Delaware County residents aggravated.

“We are not picking a site,” Crone said referring to trash sites, but “we are picking locations.”

“This is an evaluation of the current status and guide for future system development,” Purdy said.

 Purdy declined to release the study saying there was additional work that needed to be done on the project. 

“Despite over 25 years of system development and operation there is no strategy plan created and we hope to fill that void,” Purdy said. "Future goals are to create a strategic plan to guide future development."

Purdy explained the history behind the solid waste department, including the one-half cent sales tax passed in 1988, which included the implementation of 33 green boxes for waste collection.

Because of misuse and problems at the green boxes in 1993, the Solid Waste Authority asked Oklahoma State University for a study earmarked for convenience centers.

The county takes in just under 28,000 tons of trash every year, he said.

“We hope to have a plan (in place) by the first of the years, Purdy said.

“This is a great start,” said Doug Smith, county commissioner chairman (District 1) after the presentation.

Other business

In other business, the commissioners approved two resolutions that allow “to employ standard segregation of duties policies” and “to file inventory records for any all equipment purchased with county tax dollars costing $500 and over.”

The resolutions allow the commissioners to enforce accountability regarding the countywide fire tax and having a policy in place were all equipment disposed up is put on an inventory list.

“This is all about preventing fraud and error,” Smith said.

“I had one fire department that hadn’t updated their inventory in eight years,” said Russell Martin, District No. 2 County Commissioner.

“We have to do this (inventory) or we will get written up,” Smith said.

Also approved the current board members for the Butler Fire Department and the Colcord Fire Department.

Butler Fire Department members include, Mack Brewer, president; Bill Elliott, vice-president; Joyce Crossley, treasurer; Paula Prins, secretary; Roger Tanner, member; Randy Prins, Fire Chief; Roger Tanner, Assistant Fire Chief; Randy Prins and Barbara Barnes, requisitioning; Jimmy Ford and Ashley Snell, receiving and Paula Prins, inventory.

Colcord Fire Department members include, Melissa Earp, mayor; Gerald McDaniel, Earl Bishop, Rob Matney and Tina Denny, members; Kyle Nichols, Fire Chief; Craig Kustanborter, Assistant Fire Chief; Kyle Nichols and Barbara Barnes, requisitioning; Troy Long and Clayton Nichols, receiving and Jeff Bennette, inventory.

Other items of interest:

• a $20 bid by Jeff Taylor for property in the Deer Creek area of Flint Ridge was approved.

• an item regarding the lease/purchase for three motor graders was tabled due to additional bank documents needed.

• a request from the Delaware County Health Department to surplus and HP Laser Jet printer, Opti Plex monitor and overhead projector was approved.

Martin informed his fellow commissioners he plans to attend a Jay city meeting where rate changes for rental and a clean-up fee for the Jay Community Center will be discussed.

The next meeting is 9 a.m., Monday, Sept. 11 at the Delaware County Courthouse in the Commissioners’ Public Meeting room.